Ada Lovelace and Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley are two of the most fascinating women of the Victorian era, and their contributions to science and science fiction respectively. What if the two met as children and teamed up to form a detective agency? That’s the premise of Jordan Stratford’s Wollstonecraft, a book aimed at girls 8-12 designed to inspire a love of technology, imagination, and history. For a $10 pledge, you’ll receive an ebook of the finished product.
London 1826: The Advent of the Steam Age
11 year old Ada has a problem: her governess, Miss Coverlet, has quit her job to go get married (a dumb idea if ever there was one, if you ask Ada) and her new tutor Percy (“Peebs”) is a total drip. She’d rather be left to her own devices – literally – inventing things and solving math problems and ignoring people altogether.
She’s also forced to study alongside the imaginative girlie-girl Mary, who’s always going on about romance and exotic travels. Fortunately, Mary’s appetite for adventure leads her to propose the two girls open a detective agency, and when an heiress shows up with a case about a missing diamond, it’s the perfect puzzle to coax Ada out of her shell.
This is the made up story about two very real girls – Ada, the world’s first computer programmer, and Mary, the world’s first science fiction author – caught up in a steampunk world of hot-air balloons and steam engines, jewel thieves and mechanical contraptions. For readers 8-12.
This is a pro-math, pro-science, pro-history and pro-literature adventure novel for and about girls, who use their education to solve problems and catch a jewel thief. Ada and Mary encounter real historical characters, such as Percy Shelley, Charles Babbage, Michael Faraday, and Charles Dickens – people whom the girls actually knew. If Jane Austen wrote about zeppelins and brass goggles, this would be the book.
Why “Wollstonecraft”? Mary names the detective agency after her mother, the famous feminist writer. If this is the kind of book you’d like to see, please support this project.